Golden State (44-8) at Memphis (33-22)
When: Friday, February 10th 2017
Where: FedEx Forum, Memphis, TN
Time: 8:05 ET | TV: CSN Bay Area, FSN Southeast
Kevin Durant’s first trip back to Oklahoma City is coming up on Saturday, but first, his Golden State Warriors have a tough task against the Memphis Grizzlies on Friday night. Memphis is the only team to beat Golden State twice this season including a 128-119 overtime win on January 6th in Oakland after the Warriors held a 19-point fourth quarter lead. Memphis also earned an emphatic 110-89 home win in the December 10th matchup. Memphis tuned up for this contest by easily handling the Western Conference-worst Phoenix Suns 110-91 on Wednesday, two nights after beating San Antonio 89-74. The Grizzlies held Phoenix to 33.3% shooting, including 5-of-23 from 3-point range. Memphis’ defense has limited six of its last seven opponents under 100 points and is third in the NBA in scoring defense (99.1). The Grizzlies have won six of those seven games as well and are tied with the Los Angeles Clippers for the fifth spot in the Western Conference. Power forward Zach Randolph (left foot) sat out Wednesday but expects to play Friday. Randolph averages 14.2 points a game and leads the team in rebounding (8.3) despite playing less than 30 minutes some nights.
The Warriors also eased into this matchup with a thumping of a depleted Chicago Bulls’ squad 123-92 on Wednesday while shooting 55.8% from the floor and handing out 37 assists on 48 made field goals. Golden State’s explosive offense occasionally overshadows what the team can do on the other side of the court as the Warriors rank as one of the best defensive teams in the league. Golden State leads the NBA in blocks (6.5), steals (9.4) and 3-point field goal defense (31.9%) while ranking third in defensive field goal percentage (43.6%). The Warriors limited the Bulls to 4-of-24 from 3-point range on Wednesday while Klay Thompson led the offense with 28 points on 10-of-18 shooting. Power forward Draymond Green went 5-of-6 from 3-point range on Wednesday after going 6-of-22 in his previous four games. Durant fell shot of a triple-double against Chicago, recording 22 points, 10 rebounds, and seven assists. The Warriors still lead the Spurs by four games for the top spot in the West.
Memphis has not only proven they can hang with Golden State, but they can beat them as well. I’ll easily takes these points as the Grizzlies will keep it close.
Pick: Grizzlies +7.5